April 21, 2024

The Dodgers have won the World Series once in the past 35 years. The moment of victory is forever etched in team lore: Julio Urías throwing a third strike, twisting away from home plate to squat and pump his fists in triumph, then turning back and extending his arms wide as catcher Austin Barnes jumped in for the embrace.

This time last year, Urías was the talk of opening day, the pride of the Dodgers’ fan base, the winning pitcher in the first game of the season that could have launched him toward riches in free agency.

This year, hardly anyone has talked about him, or with him. He is an invisible man.

“I haven’t heard from him,” said Jaime Jarrín, the Dodgers’ retired Hall of Fame broadcaster.

Two team officials each said various members of the organization have reached out to Urías, but no one has heard back.

“He’s gone totally dark,” one of the officials said.

In September, Urías was arrested after an LAFC game on suspicion of felony domestic violence and put on administrative leave.

In January, the Los Angeles County district attorney declined to charge Urías with a felony. The district attorney’s office said he had pushed his wife “against a fence and pulled her by the hair or shoulders” but that “neither the victim’s injuries nor the defendant’s criminal history justify a felony filing.”

The district attorney forwarded the matter to the Los Angeles city attorney for “misdemeanor filing considerations.” That was 12 weeks ago.

“The matter is still under review,” Ivor Pine, spokesman for the city attorney, said Thursday.

That means whatever discipline Major League Baseball might levy against Urías is on hold until the city attorney makes a decision. The league would then interview Urías, consider evidence from its investigation and whatever evidence the district attorney and city attorney might share.

Under the MLB policy on domestic violence and sexual assault, a player can be suspended even if he is not charged with a crime. If Urías were suspended, he would become the first player twice suspended under the policy.

He is 27. This time last year, we were wondering whether he might make $200 million in free agency. This year, we are wondering whether his major league career might be over.

“I think all of us are waiting for the authorities to let us know where Julio stands,” Urías’ agent Scott Boras said Thursday.

Boras said Urías is working out and keeping in pitching shape.

“He’s basically doing what players do,” Boras said. “He’s also taking steps to grow personally.”

Boras declined to offer specifics, or to confirm whether Urías had undertaken a treatment program. He did say Urías intends to pitch again.

“We certainly have teams inquiring about him a lot,” Boras said.

It is impossible to miss the juxtaposition here.

Trevor Bauer, the former Dodgers pitcher whose suspension for violating the policy has expired, is all over the place: giving interviews to the media, churning out content for his own social media channels, pitching in a minor league exhibition game in Arizona, pitching for a Mexican League team. He wants a major league job, but no team has offered him one, and the season has started without him.

Bauer is an everywhere man. Urías, once the heir to Fernando Valenzuela as a Mexican icon among the Dodgers’ half-Latino fan base, is a nowhere man.

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